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Building social networks

Thursday, August 14, 2014
Ty Richardson PHOTOS: MicheAl Bruce

Entrepreneurship has no age limit, says Ty Richardson, chief executive officer, YoPro Global. YoPro Global is a social community for graduates and young professionals to have a forum to explore career interests, interact with experienced professionals and find resources. 

There are established YoPro Global communities in countries like Dublin. But Richardson, 35, has decided to expand that community. His target: 75 countries—including T&T— and with a deadline for completion of 78 weeks, Richardson plans to launch this two-year campaign to build the world’s first global offline social network. And he intends to start in T&T first. 

A Trinidadian by birth, Richardson said it would cost approximately US$,3900 to build the T&T network but this cost would increase depending on the size of country in which the launch is taking place.

“Here we have put in place a committee that will monitor its growth. Because the events are ticketed, all of the costs are deferred in the revenue that is brought in. We make revenue at the end of the day, then we give a percentage back to the committee.

He added that the committee is offered stock in the global company after five years. 

Speaking to the Business Guardian last Wednesday, Richardson said entrepreneurship requires a deep desire to want to start a business, adding that the effort to build a country’s economy through entrepreneurship must come from the people and cannot come from the public sector alone.

Richardson describes himself as an “evolving” entrepreneur. 

“Entrepreneurship is important for a society because it fuels and fosters competition. It also fosters creativity and innovation. When you have that fostered, the consumer wins. More competition means better prices, better productivity, greater efficiency.”

With the growing social media networks, Richardson said competition is stiff. While the traditional LinkedIn and Facebook are its competition, YoPro Global is competing with every other Web site available to the user. In other words, any network that people believe they can build a community around.

“We absolutely have competitors. Even though our model is different, we are competing for eyeballs. We are competing for the attention span of that individual who will jump, jump, jump (from Web site to Web site). What we have to do is deliver a model that is efficient, effective, fast and gives value right away.”


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